To learn is natural

Today we are accustomed to being taught. Many believe that a child can only learn by being taught, but what do you remember from your school years? Only the things that has been useful for you, right? Is it not true that you better remember what you learned on your own?

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To learn is necessary. When a child plays, he lis learning, when a child asks, he is learning. The child learns what he needs. The child will learn to read words because he sees them everywhere. If a child develops a passion for dinosaurs, he will know everything about them, then he will love math, and so on.

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What a child does not like is to only learn a little about a subject, and never know why, and what a child does not like is to learn about things he is not interested in, things he does not need.

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If you are in a foreign country and you need to buy food, you will learn the language much faster than anything you have learned in school.

The teaching kills learning, the more you are taught, the less you pick yourself, and since it is the same movement that prints learning in memory, you will not learn, and you will not remember.

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Based on this principle, we must rethink how to teach children. To learn is no longer to teach them, but just like before the school system existed, to support them in the discoveries.

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“We learn not in school, but in life” (Seneca)

 

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67 thoughts on “To learn is natural

  1. Joshua Lehr says:

    When I was in school (…) I had the opportunity to choose classes in the later years. I had chosen German (to my disadvantage nowadays…) Latin (one year, but my classmates were not so intelligent) and Accounting (business financial record-keeping). These days I’m studying the skills that are necessary to survival.

    I’m having more fun learning life skills than false history.

  2. Varg Vikernes says:

    Reblogged this on Thulean Perspective and commented:

    To those who have or plan to have children, perhaps this new blog — by my wife and me — might be of interest to you. It deals with instinctive and creative learning — like it was done in the days of yore.

    • Kevin Sommers says:

      Glad to see that the two of you will still be writing. I think with this blog though, I will be posting much fewer comments. I don’t think I have much to add to these topics, but there is much that I can learn. 🙂

      Really glad that you are writing about parenting, I don’t want to be completely hopeless when that time comes.

    • This is very valuable to me, I am so glad you taking the time to address parenting! Our children are our most precious asset.

    • If by plan you mean my loving partner is going to plan to put holes in my condoms, then yeah sure. We’re “Planning” to have kids.

      This seems alot like nature-nurture like philosophy. Letting them learn what they need and are interested in would be nature teaching opposed to being spoon fed information by an adult, nurture.

  3. Graham Dunne says:

    This seems like a most beautiful way to educate your children. I abhorred school; the fact I was being dictated to and couldn’t pick my own path really annoyed me. This fosters a child’s interests and nourishes them, making learning seem fun and not like a chore. Nothing is worse than stifling a child’s creativity — and that’s what school does.

    I really look forward to the entries in this blog.

    • Kevin Sommers says:

      Yes, school was done way too much by the book. While I do learn quite well through lectures, I only do so if I have a reason to care about the topic at hand. I think Varg really nailed it here, one of the largest problems with the school system is that the students are given no reason to care about what is being taught. Perhaps the best way to introduce a lesson is by showing the kids how it will help them in life.

      I was always good at math, but every school year, I’d forget everything I’d learned in the prior year. You’ve got to give the brain a reason to care about the information if you want it to stick. Trying to brute force something into a child’s mind through memorization is just barbaric.

  4. Johan D says:

    I can relate my childhood studying to everything that is said in this article. My former mentor (who was a bit “rebellious” to the educational system) showed me this clip once, which is of some interest even while being on a “common” level (unfortunately solely in Swedish).

    • Daniel C. Reiter (formerly dcreiter) says:

      When I was a youngster in grammar school, it seems I instinctively already knew which teachings were of importance to me, and which to discard. By the time high school came along, I absolutely hated having to attend classes that were of no use or interest to me. Yes, it is very true that what I have learned on my own far outweighs anything I was taught in school. My two children are fully grown, and despite their having attended public schools, I tried to logically explain to them that they should question everything– teachers, authority figures, supposed history, and even their mother and I– and find their own path and follow it. I think I was successful.

  5. Krsnik says:

    I remember being a happy and curious child who loved reading and learning. Then I remember changing into an angry and rebellious child after being in school for a few years. As far as I am concerned, school is child abuse. It kills motivation to learn and either turns the child into a docile slave or an angry rebel.

    • Marie Cachet says:

      Yes, it is true, I think.

    • Dragon says:

      I have expirenced school the same way, I always loved to paint, draw and later on to write. But this creativiti got killed by teachers because ‘learning’ was more important. The only lessens wich I liked where biology, artclass, history and English. Letting children attent school kills their minds and their souls just like they tried to do with mine. Now I’m 27 and finaly my soul has fought it self lose from this brainswashing system we all are living in.

      Don’t support the things that your children aren’t good at but stimulate the things that they love!

  6. Free Man says:

    To me, it seems the best thing about homeschooIing is simpIy that the teacher has Iess students. A teacher who onIy has a coupIe of students wiII be far more successfuII in conveying the message, than one who has to deaI with 20 or 30. I think this makes a reaIIy big difference in itseIf.

  7. sigebrand says:

    I realised this very well when failing to study Japanese THEIR way at university (not just because it is an extremely difficult language to learn)…especially with language the way to go is certainly to do it yourself – through self teaching and practical experience.

    This is also why I always hated exams and much preferred essay assignments…

    Perhaps it’s not too late to change for all of us, though I find language-learning very slow-going these days, haha…We still have the motivation to learn as adults in so many ways, it’s just hindered somewhat by brain maturity I suppose…

  8. Edward Le Prieur says:

    I imagine I learned a great deal more from talking to him, and being in the woods hunting, fishing, camping etc..than I ever did in school. Of course also in my own endeavors.

    Traditional schooling system are paltry at best, if one or two students in class are being lazy or stupid. Then the rest of the students have to pay for it.

  9. Drēogan says:

    This is a very intuitive system, and I will be sure to follow it for when I have children. I could understand this myself, but wasn’t sure exactly how to organize it in a system.
    Thank you for sharing and I wish your children stay as productive as they seem here!

  10. Duncan Stewart says:

    Oh wow, this is relieving.
    I was growing a little melancholy seeing as writing for Thulean Perspective is over, and I know that I would go insane in this terrible modern world without some guidance and motivation from my fellow Pagan brothers and sisters.

    I will look forward to this site!

    • svanforts says:

      Exactly! I think that we should have some alternative blog IF Varg and Marie stops writing, if you know what I mean… We should have that one place where we could share our opinions even if Varg and Marie are being busy with their family.

  11. Nøkken says:

    Such a simple and true concept.

  12. Adalwolf says:

    This is absolutely true. I have to admit that I often avoided going to school or doing homework. This meant I wasn’t learning many things I actually did have an interest in. Instead, I took my time and went for long detours in the woods on my way to school. Instead I became accustomed to my own mind, and thoughts. Around 3-4 hours a day for a few years was spent doing this. I suppose that had it’s benefits too. I still graduated, but I was only able to attend post-secondary school because I later took to private instruction, and was able to prove my acquired knowledge through entrace examinations. This was interesting because as you say, I turned into an expert quite quickly, whereas before I was ‘failing’. Your children are very lucky.

  13. Veleda says:

    I’m pregnant with my first (of many, my husband and I hope!). This seems like a nice resource, I will keep checking back. Thank you both 🙂

  14. Ofthegrave says:

    Will marie translated the post to french or should i go on and do it?

  15. Ofthegrave says:

    Et voila:

    Aujourd’hui nous sommes accoutumés à être éduqué. Beaucoup croit qu’un enfant peu seulement apprendre en étant éduqué, mais qu’est-ce que vous vous rappelez de ces années passées à l’école? Seulement les choses qui vous ont été utiles, vrai? N’est-ce pas vrai que vous vous rappelez mieux ce que vous apprenez par vous-même?

    Apprendre est nécessaire. Quand un enfant joue, il apprend. Quand un enfant demande, il apprend. L’enfant apprend ce dont il a besoin. L’enfant apprendra à lire les mots parce qu’il les voit partout. Si un enfant développe une passion pour les dinosaures, il saura tout à propos d’eu, alors il aimera les mathématiques, ainsi de suite.

    Ce que un enfant n’aime pas c’est d’apprendre seulement un petit peu sur un sujet donnée, et ne jamais savoir pourquoi, et ce qu’un enfant n’aime pas est d’apprendre des choses en quoi il n’est pas intéressé, des choses dont il n’a pas besoin.

    Si vous êtes dans un pays étranger et que vous devez acheter de la nourriture, vous allez apprendre le langage bien plus vite que tout ce que vous avez appris à l’école.

    L’enseignement tue l’apprentissage, plus on vous enseigne, moins vous réglez un problème par vous-même, et vue que c’est le même mouvement qui imprègne l’apprentissage dans la mémoire, vous n’apprendrez pas, et vous ne vous souviendrez pas.

    Basée sur ce principe, nous devons repenser comment éduquer nos enfants. Apprendre n’est plus enseigner, tout comme avant que le système scolaire existe, des supporter dans leurs découverte.

    Nous apprennont pas a l’école, mais dans la vie. (Seneca)

  16. hnossa says:

    YES! Very interesting!
    At the moment I am reading a lot about M. Montessori and her way to teach children. I thought about how I have learned, and came to the conclusion that I forgot a lot, accept of the things I learned from my own motivation.

    That’s why I’m thinking about sending my daughter to a Montessori-school. (In Berlin self-schooling isn’t possible…). She has a great imaginative power and I don’t want school to take it from her. Also she’s very interested in many things (dinosaurs, Vikings, Nordic mytholgy, animals…) and I don’t want school to destroy her interests. I’m very interested in the things I’ll get to read here.
    Merci beaucoup à vous deux!
    Votre enfants sont vraiment très mignons…

    • Marie Cachet says:

      Montessori schools are, I think, the best school system, but they are very expensive (and you can often find them just in big cities), at least if you are many children…

      • sigebrand says:

        Expensive and, though it’s a lot better, it’s still school, so best to just homeschool, and live near people with children ideally…

      • hnossa says:

        Sad,that they abuse such great ideas for moneymaking…Even achieving the certificate as Montessoriteacher is expensive..So that only a few people are able to benefit from M. Montessoris work.

  17. cameronmarsh says:

    That’s very good that you do that for you children. Me, I’m not interested in most of things at school but it doesn’t matter, I have to do it, or else I’ve got to fall into darkness. I hate high school…I hope it will be done rapidly

  18. svanforts says:

    Je suis Leo! Ca va?
    I chose to study French in primary school. The teacher was a real pain in the ass and so was the learning. I stopped reading France…Kinda shame really :/

  19. Saint-Loup says:

    Bonjour
    Laissez-moi rester sceptique face à ces affirmations.
    Selon une étude récente les pays ayant les meilleurs résultats sont Singapour,Honk-Kong,Taiwan,Corée du Sud,Japon…
    http://www.businessinsider.com/countries-with-the-most-brainpower-2013-10
    Que des pays, où le “bachotage” est culturel et où les élèves travaillent plus de 15H par jour, dorment tres peu et où le fameux phénomène des “Tiger Moms” à la Amy Chua est très ancré.
    Le “bourrage de crâne” semble donc efficace…
    De plus le type d’apprentissage que vous décrivez marche peut-être bien pour des enfants en bas-âge mais à partir d’un certain niveau, le crayon et la feuille sur le bureau paraissent inévitables, dur d’apprendre les mathématiques autrement par exemple.

    • Marie Cachet says:

      Pour le crayon et la feuille je n’ai pas dit l’inverse. Apprendre ce qui nous fait plaisir où ce qui nous est utile ne signifie aucunement apprendre autrement qu’avec un papier et un crayon.
      Pour le reste, il ne s’agit de résultats que sur quelques années. A côté de l’histoire de l’humanité et du système scolaire cela fait peu. Il est question de l’apprentissage amenant la créativité, et non du bourrage de crâne. J’ai très bien réussi mon baccalauréat, je savais dessiner les cartes de tous les pays du monde pour l’occasion, je connaissais toutes mes dates en histoire, etc. Mais je ne peux pas sortir les mêmes choses aujourd’hui, sans refaire cet apprentissage. Il s’agit de savoir ce qu’il reste sur le long terme, pas de connaître les résultats des examens.

      • Ofthegrave says:

        Très bien dit, beaucoup d’étude ici, DEP, CEGEP, sont du bourrage de crâne ou le but est de retenir le plus d’information a court terme pour passée un examen, et apres on oublie tout car on a rien toucher, rien mit en pratique, donc rien dans le tiroir de la mémoire a long terme!

    • hnossa says:

      Je n’ ai jamais arrêtté d’ apprendre comme proposé içi. Même avec presque 30 ans je suis ma motivation pour apprendre. Toutes les autres choses je suis pressé d’apprendre à l’ université pour mes examens sont oubliés vitement.

  20. LeicaBlixa says:

    These little ones are so cute! Brightens my day just to see them playing and learning 🙂

  21. Saint-Loup says:

    re
    pas faux
    mais en même temps il s’agit de se positionner sur l’avenir de nos enfants (qui n’est pas le notre) si on veut qu’ils puissent choisir ce qu’ils veulent faire plus tard : tradeur ou agriculteur, il faut qu’ils réussissent leurs diplômes sinon ils n’auront malheureusement pas le luxe de ce choix….

    Et puis plus cyniquement, avec les problèmes de retraite et de sécurité sociale actuels(qui n’iront pas en s’arrangeant), il vaut mieux avoir des enfants en capacité de nous offrir une belle maison de retraite au soleil et des soins de qualité plutôt que des indigents qui seront obligés de nous abandonner à notre triste sort… 😥

    • shiroishishi says:

      Le problème ne vient pas du choix limité pour les enfants. Il vient de ce système qui veut des esprits formatés, pas créatifs, etc. C’est un peu égoiste de penser à la maison de retraite au soleil, par ailleurs, mais malheureusement, nous en sommes réduits à ça dans notre pays (comme dans d’autres)… Oui, ‘réduits’, par notre propre faute. Quand je vois ces grands-pères tibétains de près de 100 ans enchainer pirouettes et grands-écarts, ça me laisse perplexe sur notre style de vie et les raisons des maladies de l’âge.

  22. Calgach says:

    This was a very good idea – not only because so much of what we are told about teaching children (and ourselves) is wrong and can lead to confusion, but it is also fits well with your busy lives. The material for your articles will come automatically through raising your kids, cutting out the time you guys would typically have to spend on research. Very efficient :).

    • I think it will give a lot of people a chance to actually do something about the beliefs we share. Talking about a coming war, an ice age, etc are kind of “out there” ideas, and I think it has scared some people off from embracing odalism. Preparing for conflict may be a good option for some of us, but for a lot of us would like a gentler way to change the future. Raising our kids right is the best way I can see.

  23. Jäger says:

    New blog is going to be very beneficial to me maybe even more so than the others. My wife and I are looking how to better educate our children. They are jot of school age yet, but I figure it is never too early.to start. Thank you for this Varg and Marie, I am sure this will be my most frequently visited site.

  24. ubertodt says:

    It’s nice find this blog. This will be very useful in the future 🙂

  25. artusofabio93 says:

    First, thanks Varg and Marie for creating this blog and share your knoledge with us (once again).

    The topic of this blog makes me excited, it is very important and I want to learn more (or better, to start learning) about this!

    A question: about all those figures and games for self-learning are a your creation or did you buy them?

    I think that many people who frequent this blog and TP have experienced a sort of auto-homeschooling during their lives.

  26. Red Orm says:

    This seems to be the general philosophy of more modern, revolutionary methods of education, such as Montessori. If you let a child discover his or her own interests and devote energy to learning about them, they will excel, because they are curious, excited, and obsessed in a way that most adults cannot be.

    The alternative, normal ‘education’ in the West, is for children to be bored in class all day with a mediocre understanding of many subjects. They are much better off, in my opinion, excelling at just one thing that they care deeply about than being bat at math, spelling, history, english, etc.

  27. Matt A. T. Turner says:

    This is how my brother’s and I were schooled. We had some formal education from parents and family, but we mostly played and read.

  28. Pelle says:

    I really agree here, the problem I can see is: of your child want a job in todays society, say being a scientist of some kind, you’ll have to have participate in the schoolsystem, get your examinas etc. Have you given this a second thought? How do you solve this? I don’t have much knowledge regarding “hometeaching”, but like I said, I agree.

  29. artusofabio93 says:

    Did you have purchased all those objects for the kids or you have manufactured them?

  30. King Dunmail says:

    Could i recommend a book ‘The Magical Child’ by Joseph Chilton Pearce

  31. Aleksandra says:

    I’m glad you haven’t disappear from the Internet, Varg and Marie!
    My husband and I would very much appreciate a post about teaching small children languages, especially languages which are not native for their parents. Varg once wrote that your children already know a little bit of English- how did you familiarize them with this language, and how do you make sure they won’t get the three languages confused?

    Also, a note about getting them know the world’s history would be interesting. I honestly don’t know what to tell my son, and my other future children, about certain history facts which are true but nowadays forbidden to talk about. Luckily my son is just 10 months old, but the day when he asks me about … will come.

    Good luck with your new blog! My family will find it most useful.

  32. ribbung says:

    Here is a fun and effective way to structure learning,
    that might be of interest and use for you;

    http://www.nta.atferd.no/loadfile.aspx?IdFile=447

    The method is excellent for learning skills and to remember facts, numbers and events. Also kids enjoy it.

  33. Brian says:

    Children are THE FUTURE! If children are home schooled and properly educated NOW, they will grow up and be wise to reality of what is truth and what is lies. Varg and Marie are prime examples of how to bring up children in this world we live in. Children are the future leaders of this planet. We “old folk” will not be around forever so we need to pass the reigns of knowledge onto the children so to hopefully keep the future in check! 😉

    My praise to both of you!

  34. Aleksandra says:

    I’ve just spoken to my parents in Poland, and it looks like the school age there is soon to be changed from 7 to 6… Most people justify it by ”this is how it’s like in the whole world and the kids are fine”, and they don’t even consider the consequences. Once again, Poland is changing for worse because it wants to be like the rest of the world.

  35. svanforts says:

    Found this while browsing some forum.

  36. Will Lovelaw says:

    Fantastic! Thanks for creating this blog and sharing your thoughts, ideas, even your personal life with all of us! I have seen first hand this is true. And Home School IS the ONLY way to go in this day and age. Hail Burzum! -Will

  37. Mary says:

    I really like this blog. I hope you’ll post something soon!
    Is everything right? When your new baby will come?
    Hugs to Marie, great mom 🙂

  38. Sigrid says:

    Hello
    Thanks for this website. Just wonder where you get the white and black carpet on this photo : https://thewaysofyore.files.wordpress.com/2013/10/8.jpg

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